Thursday, February 19, 2009

Nobody Knows

This past Monday I received a belated Christmas present from my son Steve, who lives near Washington, D.C. When I opened it and saw the inscription on the DVD it contained I was speechless. "Could this mean what I think it might mean?" I asked myself silently. I called Steve to ask him how and why he had sent it.

It turns out that Steve had attended a Sunstone Symposium East session recently, where Darius Gray and Margaret Blair Young were presenters. They screened this film for the audience, which was based on their published trilogy of books called Standing on the Promises, the story of the black Mormon experience.

After the presentation Steve introduced himself and learned that Darius and Margaret were familiar with our family name. Steve then asked if they knew his father's experience on 25 July 1965, which happened the very night his wife Nicole was born. They did not. So, Steve told them. Hence the inscription. "To Eugene: Thank you for preparing the way. What you did mattered." THAT had been the hill his father chose to die on. [See: "Carmel Beach Challenge", January 1965]


  1. The inscription on the DVD cover, signed by Darius Gray and Margaret Young reads:

    "To Eugene: Thank you for preparing the way. What you did mattered."

  2. I have not viewed this DVD, but to this day I believe that what these people have referred to as your doing something that "mattered" in "preparing the way" was in producing a document during a phenomenological revelatory event that occurred to you, my father, and it was a significant contributing factor for the break-up of our family. It led to the subsequent toxic relationship several of us had with the Church and warrants serious consideration if anyone is really interested in the search for Truth. It has been far too convenient to dismiss, table and/or otherwise ignore the content and implications of this document! I believe the creators of this DVD documentary should be willing to take a look and consider the possible sources of its content and its ramifications.

    Dad, I think you owe these people a full accounting of the event that they are referring to, because I doubt they really know what happened to you and how it affected our family because of it. I don't know if my comments will be considered counterproductive, but perhaps you could bring it to the attention of the authors. Otherwise, if they're not interested like in the past, I don't have the energy to fight or promote the openness I believe should be demonstrated.

    -Nicholas E. Kovalenko

  3. Nick, thank you for your responses. I know that this subject is still a loaded one for you and some of our family and I'm more than willing to give the accounting you suggest. However, I am not at all sure these people really know or want to know what really happened, how that document was written, what it contained or what finally happened to it.

    I will write to the producers to see what their interest is and how best to proceed, but I believe I will need some help from both you and your brother Steve to determine the appropriate next steps.

  4. As you know I am not so confident anything I say these days ends up being helpful, but let it be known that to me this is a critical component of several "transdimensional phenomena" that have occurred to us that I need to be explored in the quest for the legitimate and unbiased Truth and enlightened understanding in our lives. :-)

  5. Nick, if you will look at the banner below the Orthodox Odyssey title, you will see a quote by St. Pavel Florensky. I think it applies to this subject and your need for vindication or proof in the eyes of others to say nothing of my own need. Yes, our family was severely affected by the repercussions of the event of 25 July 1965 and the reaction to it by local Mormon officials at the time and in later years, as well as the reactions of Mormon family members.

    I'm reluctant to beat a dead horse or to attempt to revive a subject that has run its course. Nevertheless, I know you still have a passion to have it aired.

    Let's give it time.